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Diacetin, a reliable cue and private communication channel in a specialized pollination system.

Schäffler I, Steiner KE, Haid M, van Berkel SS, Gerlach G, Johnson SD, Wessjohann L, Dötterl S - Sci Rep (2015)

Bottom Line: The structural and obvious biosynthetic similarity between diacetin and associated floral oils make it a reliable cue for oil-collecting bees.It is easily perceived by oil bees, but can't be detected by other potential pollinators.Therefore, diacetin represents the first demonstrated private communication channel in a pollination system.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: 1] Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Salzburg, Hellbrunnerstr. 34, 5020 Salzburg, Austria [2] Department of Plant Systematics, University of Bayreuth, 95440 Bayreuth.

ABSTRACT
The interaction between floral oil secreting plants and oil-collecting bees is one of the most specialized of all pollination mutualisms. Yet, the specific stimuli used by the bees to locate their host flowers have remained elusive. This study identifies diacetin, a volatile acetylated glycerol, as a floral signal compound shared by unrelated oil plants from around the globe. Electrophysiological measurements of antennae and behavioural assays identified diacetin as the key volatile used by oil-collecting bees to locate their host flowers. Furthermore, electrophysiological measurements indicate that only oil-collecting bees are capable of detecting diacetin. The structural and obvious biosynthetic similarity between diacetin and associated floral oils make it a reliable cue for oil-collecting bees. It is easily perceived by oil bees, but can't be detected by other potential pollinators. Therefore, diacetin represents the first demonstrated private communication channel in a pollination system.

No MeSH data available.


Behavioural experiments testing the attractiveness of floral compounds of Lysimachia oil flowers to Macropis oil bees.Approaches of naive Macropis fulvipes females to diacetin alone (against acetone as a control), natural floral extracts of Lysimachia punctata, and complete (diacetin and four other compounds) and partially depleted synthetic mixtures of EAD-active compounds identified in L. punctata floral extracts. Exact binomial test: ns: P > 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001).
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f3: Behavioural experiments testing the attractiveness of floral compounds of Lysimachia oil flowers to Macropis oil bees.Approaches of naive Macropis fulvipes females to diacetin alone (against acetone as a control), natural floral extracts of Lysimachia punctata, and complete (diacetin and four other compounds) and partially depleted synthetic mixtures of EAD-active compounds identified in L. punctata floral extracts. Exact binomial test: ns: P > 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001).

Mentions: In two-choice experiments conducted in the flight cage, diacetin alone attracted significantly more bees than did a negative control, but significantly less bees than did a natural floral extract (Fig. 3). However, the creation of a synthetic mixture with diacetin and four additional EAD-active compounds increased the attractiveness to the same level as the natural floral extract (see also supplementary data, Movie 1).


Diacetin, a reliable cue and private communication channel in a specialized pollination system.

Schäffler I, Steiner KE, Haid M, van Berkel SS, Gerlach G, Johnson SD, Wessjohann L, Dötterl S - Sci Rep (2015)

Behavioural experiments testing the attractiveness of floral compounds of Lysimachia oil flowers to Macropis oil bees.Approaches of naive Macropis fulvipes females to diacetin alone (against acetone as a control), natural floral extracts of Lysimachia punctata, and complete (diacetin and four other compounds) and partially depleted synthetic mixtures of EAD-active compounds identified in L. punctata floral extracts. Exact binomial test: ns: P > 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4526864&req=5

f3: Behavioural experiments testing the attractiveness of floral compounds of Lysimachia oil flowers to Macropis oil bees.Approaches of naive Macropis fulvipes females to diacetin alone (against acetone as a control), natural floral extracts of Lysimachia punctata, and complete (diacetin and four other compounds) and partially depleted synthetic mixtures of EAD-active compounds identified in L. punctata floral extracts. Exact binomial test: ns: P > 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001).
Mentions: In two-choice experiments conducted in the flight cage, diacetin alone attracted significantly more bees than did a negative control, but significantly less bees than did a natural floral extract (Fig. 3). However, the creation of a synthetic mixture with diacetin and four additional EAD-active compounds increased the attractiveness to the same level as the natural floral extract (see also supplementary data, Movie 1).

Bottom Line: The structural and obvious biosynthetic similarity between diacetin and associated floral oils make it a reliable cue for oil-collecting bees.It is easily perceived by oil bees, but can't be detected by other potential pollinators.Therefore, diacetin represents the first demonstrated private communication channel in a pollination system.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: 1] Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Salzburg, Hellbrunnerstr. 34, 5020 Salzburg, Austria [2] Department of Plant Systematics, University of Bayreuth, 95440 Bayreuth.

ABSTRACT
The interaction between floral oil secreting plants and oil-collecting bees is one of the most specialized of all pollination mutualisms. Yet, the specific stimuli used by the bees to locate their host flowers have remained elusive. This study identifies diacetin, a volatile acetylated glycerol, as a floral signal compound shared by unrelated oil plants from around the globe. Electrophysiological measurements of antennae and behavioural assays identified diacetin as the key volatile used by oil-collecting bees to locate their host flowers. Furthermore, electrophysiological measurements indicate that only oil-collecting bees are capable of detecting diacetin. The structural and obvious biosynthetic similarity between diacetin and associated floral oils make it a reliable cue for oil-collecting bees. It is easily perceived by oil bees, but can't be detected by other potential pollinators. Therefore, diacetin represents the first demonstrated private communication channel in a pollination system.

No MeSH data available.